Rule of thumb is that regardless of the economy, people will smoke, drink and gamble. I believe this to be true and bought some shares today. Not trying to push this stock, however at this price it's hard not to think that it's going north soon.
Casino's aren't the only gambling play around. Look at some of the equipment suppliers, like WMS, SGMS, BYI, and SHFL. I leave out IGT only because they seem to be falling behind the pack a little and WMS has a much better balance sheet, and product IMHO. Yes, I've owned WMS for some time... SGMS is more in the lottery/vlt biz, and has had a nice run of late. I threw SHFL in only because they eventually get mentioned - personally I think they operate on such tight margins that it will be hard for them to ever break out. There are far fewer suppliers than operators which tends to make them a little easier to weed out.
No one knows how to run a casino better than Steve Wynn, and I think he has the cash to ride this out and emerge a big "wynner" yet again. But the casino stocks in general tend to run w/ the economy quite a bit. Harrah's was about the best run public outfit but unfortunately pvt equity took them off the market a few years ago. MGM is facing some liquidity issues given the big buildout of the city center in Vegas, LVS has the same probs w/ their new tower at the Venetian.
There's also internet plays like UBET, and racing stocks like PENN and CHDN. Racing in general is a challenged industry without economic pressures but the operators that are in states w/ slots tend to perform better. Slots can have a direct impact on revenue in the form of racino's, and indirectly on the racing business as it tends to boost purses, which attracts more/better horses which in turn boosts the wagering handle. I've owned CHDN for several years, in part for the free passes good at all facilities, but tend to trade it on rises and dips.
So there's a few jumping off points and alternate plays to look at Long and strong w/ you all on DEO, I too wish I added in the 40's but not unhappy w/ what I have.
Yeah, I keep trying to figure out gambling. It's hard to figure out what a brand is in the casino world, if you know what I mean. A brand like Smirnoff or Marlboro is priceless and available almost anywhere in the world.
Casinos are destinations, not something you can experience every day (well, unless you live in a gambling town, and locals tend to congregate in "local" casinos). Casinos are good until they grow old, then the newest ones seem like the places to go. In other words, you're old hat even before you pay the mortgage on your once latest and greatest casino.